When tyrants see weakness, they seldom agree to give up something of value! That should be the driving motivation behind our dealings with Iran's government. Sadly, the opposite is true.
We stand at a pivotal moment, not just for the people of Iran, but also for the hopes for peace in the wider world. Nothing should be more important than encouraging the Iranian people to remove the bloodthirsty regime which has been behind so much misery and death for many throughout the world including Americans.
No vain pursuit of a worthless short term agreement on nuclear issues should stand in the way of what would truly be a game changer in the global war on terror. Yet, this is what Obama is doing. He won't lift a finger to help the Iranian people get rid of the Mullahs that govern Iran because he thinks he can get them to make a deal on nukes. He's wrong and the entire world will pay the price as the opportunity to for REAL CHANGE slips by.
People carry the body of a man allegedly shot by pro-government militia near a rally supporting leading opposition presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi in Tehran, Iran, Monday, June 15, 2009.
Photo at right from "The Price of Freedom" posted by an Iranian blogger living in London.
Thanks Missy for collecting some excellent thought pieces on the problem. Here's a sampling:
Obama, Siding With the Regime
By Robert Kagan
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
...Obama never meant to spark political upheaval in Iran, much less encourage the Iranian people to take to the streets. That they are doing so is not good news for the president but, rather, an unwelcome complication in his strategy of engaging and seeking rapprochement with the Iranian government on nuclear issues.
Whatever [Obama's] personal sympathies may be, if he is intent on sticking to his original strategy, then he can have no interest in helping the opposition. His strategy toward Iran places him objectively on the side of the government's efforts to return to normalcy as quickly as possible, not in league with the opposition's efforts to prolong the crisis.
If you find all this disturbing, you should. The worst thing is that this approach will probably not prevent the Iranians from getting a nuclear weapon. But this is what "realism" is all about. It is what sent Brent Scowcroft to raise a champagne toast to China's leaders in the wake of Tiananmen Square. It is what convinced Gerald Ford not to meet with Alexander Solzhenitsyn at the height of detente. Republicans have traditionally been better at it than Democrats -- though they have rarely been rewarded by the American people at the ballot box, as Ford and George H.W. Bush can attest. We'll see whether President Obama can be just as cold-blooded in pursuit of better relations with an ugly regime, without suffering the same political fate.
Oh dear, how inconvenient for the White House
By Melanie Phillips
The Spectator (UK)
Tuesday, 16th June 2009
... [I]n all this ferment, Obama stands exposed. Everywhere his strategy of abasement to tyranny is going belly-up. Korea test-fired its nukes and gave Washington the finger. And of course the flip-side of the grovelling to America’s enemies is his arm-lock on its ally. Having been so conspicuously even-handed in Iran between tyranny and resistance, there is one area where Obama is not being even-handed. It is only towards Israel, the prospective victim of Iranian genocidal and potentially nuclear aggression, that Obama is playing the heavy and making demands that he is making of no other country.
And now Israel is also fighting back. Netanyahu’s adroit challenge to the Palestinians to accept Israel’s existence as a Jewish state immediately laid bare Palestinian rejectionism -- and has now put Obama in the position of forcing Israel to bring into being a state which rests on the belief that Israel should be destroyed.
To this now explicitly demonstrated fact, Obama seems resolutely blind. To the condemnation of Hezbollah by the Lebanese, he was deaf. Now Iran may be on the point of finally getting rid of its regime, Obama is struck dumb. As the world struggles to find its way out of tyranny and into freedom there will be no assistance from the White House, whose present incumbent is simply on the wrong side of history.
Obama's foreign policy is quickly turning into one massive sh&@ball. By comparison, Jimmy Carter's foreign outlook seems sound!